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Gun crimes increasing in US communities

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2022-11-26 08:40

A memorial is seen in the parking lot after a mass shooting at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia, US, Nov 23, 2022. [Photo/Agencies]

The number of felony gun crimes has been increasing in hundreds of communities during the pandemic, according to an article published on Newsy on Monday.

A Newsy analysis of recently released FBI crime data has found from 2019 to 2021, 78 percent of large communities had an increase in the number of serious gun crimes, and the number in Austin, Portland, Louisville and Seattle increased by more than 75 percent.

In Austin, the number of felony attacks with guns increased from 571 in 2019 to 1128 in 2021, while the number almost doubled during the same period in Salt Lake City.

"Gun violence is on the rise and it's terrible that this is happening," said Salt Lake City Police Chief Mike Brown.

According to the crime research firm AH Datalytics, the murder rate in the US increased by 30 percent between 2019 and 2020, and continued to rise in 2021. "One factor researchers point to for the rise: record gun sales in the US in both 2020 and 2021," the authors said.

SafeHome.org's analysis of the FBI's National Instant Criminal Background Check System data shows Americans bought 21.6 million guns in 2020, an increase of 60 percent over 2019. Although sales decreased in 2021, it was higher than the pre-epidemic level.

"The rise in aggravated assaults with a firearm is certainly concerning," said Matthew Longshore, a public information officer for the Aurora, Colorado Police Department.

A gunman killed five people and injured 19 others in a shooting at a Colorado Springs nightclub over the weekend. Several days later, a shooter at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia killed six.

According to the Gun Violence Archive, the United States has suffered more than 600 mass shootings so far this year, and there were 690 mass shootings last year, up from 610 in 2020 and 417 in 2019.

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